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The Worst Vacation Ever? Really?
After all, there's more to tell if everything went wrong. Holly Robinson writes of this phenomenon in her Huffington Post piece called, fittingly enough, "Cherishing the Memory of Bad Vacations." (Read the whole piece for some hilarious descriptions of family fun gone very wrong.) She writes: "Here's the thing: bad vacations are the real family keepsakes, because you survive them together (ideally). You have to play games or tell jokes, you have to get each other through the hail or the flat tire or the flu. Surviving a bad vacation as a family requires everyone to step up and show determination, loyalty, and yes, even courage. Blue skies, sunshine, and a white beach are all pleasant, but what fun is that kind of vacation to reminisce about later?" It's true—what I fondly recall about our disastrous canoeing trip is how my brother and I made our own fun, in a time of our lives when at home we mostly ignored each other.
A good thing to remember as we plan our own family vacations. Every time I organize even the smallest of weekend getaways, I am struck by an urge to make it perfect, as if each botched meal or tantrum-punctuated outing were a major parenting failure. But nothing ruins vacation fun faster than a stressed-out, crabby parent. Robinson's story of beloved, terrible trips seems to me a call to be easy on ourselves, to remember that the most disastrous family dinner or, ahem, holiday gathering might end up being the one you all cherish the most.
In the immortal words of Clark Griswold, "I'm just trying to treat my family to a little fun."
Give yourself a break:
A reformed perfectionist on setting yourself free
3 ways to focus on the positive
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